The first twenty seconds or so are absolutely breath taking to me. And it stirs in me a subtle ache that I forget I have sometimes. I love water.
It reminds me of summer swim lessons with my cousins. That week of swimming everyday was always heaven for me. We go everyday, and between all us kids we'd be there all day. Whitney, Julie and I would play in the observation deck where its almost uncomfortably warm. We'd run through the University halls. And we'd fawn over the new swim goggles that we were sure we desperately needed. And no swim day was complete without a trip to the vending machines for savored candy that was always sticky by the time it fell into our wet little fingers. We'd make up games in the water I only vaguely recall. And after our swim lesson we'd go to the showers. I love the feeling of hot water pouring over my head. And I dont know how our mothers handled the fact that we would spend hours in the showers playing, while they patiently waited. I love water.
I think for me it was less the swimming and more the water.
But swimming allows me to be in the water. So sometimes I forget why I stopped swimming. Because on the occasions that I've found time to go swim lanes, I always remember how natural being in the water feels. And when I'm in shape and in practice, I feel like I can breath there. There's a calming rhythm to it.
There is nothing quite like sliding from the cold tile floor into the cool water. You glide right through and I always catch my breath. Holding onto the edge of the pool, getting used to the temperature of the water. I love the feeling of weightlessness. And I love that as I begin to propel my body forward, the water rushes past me. I steady my breath and try to remember the shape to hold my arm, my hand, and to kick. And I count. 1, 2, 3 Breathe. 1, 2, 3 Breathe. And I think. I love the muffled sound of the water. I love that it drowns out everything else.
(P.S. I'm pretty sure those are whale sharks at the start. Yes I love shark week. And I've swum with Manta Rays before, like put my hand out and let them swim past me as I felt their bellies... feel free to be jealous.)